Book Review: The Defenceless by Kati Hiekkapelto (Trans. by David Hackston)

Euro But Not Trash


A gritty sequel to Kati Hiekkapelto’s Petrona nominated debut.

Provocative, intelligent, and intense, Kati Hiekkapelto’s first novel, The Hummingbird, signalled the arrival of a new socially conscious voice in Nordic Noir literature. A searing commentary on Finnish attitudes to immigration, the book asked charged questions about integration in the modern Nordic context. An assured début that combined a social conscience with precision plotting.

In her follow-up novel, Kati Hiekkapelto weaves a complex multi-layered narrative that compels the reader to re-evaluate long standing opinions. More strident than its predecessor, the book uses the crime fiction genre to shine a torch onto under-reported social problems.

Pakistani migrant Sammy has fled his homeland to escape religious persecution. After his application for asylum is denied he is forced to live rough on the streets of Finland. Fearful that repatriation to Pakistan might mean execution for his Christian beliefs, Sammy seeks solace in heroin. Believing a…

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One comment

  1. […] who aren’t afraid to break the rules. Crime with a Social Conscience will be led by writers Kati Kiekkapelto and Eva Dolan, both talented authors who are so adept at weaving controversial social issues […]

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